Composer and writer based in Houston, TX.
Writer and composer Chris Becker is a freelance contributor AllAboutJazz, the contemporary classical music blog Sequenza21 and a former columnist for Houston Press, Art Attack, and the digital magazine CultureMap Houston. In addition to profiling and interviewing pop, jazz, and avant-garde musicians, choreographers, visual artists, authors, and filmmakers, Becker has published several extensive artist-interviews on his own blog, including conversations with author and musician Ned Sublette ("The World That Made New Orleans" and "Cuba and Its Music"), author and musician Michael Veal ("Dub: Soundscapes and Shattered Songs in Jamaican Reggae"), and jazz pianist Bobby Lyle. Becker also co-hosts the monthly radio program "Composer Talk" on ktru.org. He is currently completing a book collection of his interviews with female jazz musicians. The book, titled "Women In Jazz," collects Becker's interviews with women musicians of all ages and ethnic backgrounds and representing nearly every style of jazz one can imagine.
Becker has composed music for dance, film, and mixed media installations, recorded and released two CDs of music, and received grants and awards from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Meet the Composer, and the American Music Center.
My Jazz Story
I love jazz because... well, as Billie Holiday sang, "Don't explain..."
I was first exposed to jazz listening to records and going to concerts with my father.
The first jazz records I bought as a kid included Miles Davis' "Man With The Horn," Pat Metheny and Lyle Mays' "As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls," or Chuck Mangione's "Fun And Games."
My advice to new listeners: cross reference. Also, buy a cheap turntable and check out used vinyl records. Liner notes (which you often don't get when you download music) can often provide a lot of useful information for novice as well as experienced listeners.